Right Action: Marrying Integrity & Success

One of the biggest challenges for most executives is locating, discerning, and actualizing right action amidst the complexity of their role, agreements, culture, and evolving context. Right action refers to coherent, clear, committed action. We all know when we are taking a right action and we all struggle to do it as well.

We struggle because in highly complex environments there are many power struggles, competing agendas, influences, unconscious agreements, and ultimately our livelihood security is on the line as well as our social currency. Our actions determine us and so regardless of what actions we take and who they please or don’t please, our so called brand is being made–for better or for worse.

But as executives we must challenge ourselves with the question: who and ultimately what do we serve? If we do not ask this question, we will be far more likely to be overwhelmed and compromised by the context we are in. We need a rudder, one stronger than even the potential temporal existence of our role and even organization. This purposefulness has the power to discern right action amidst complexity and even chaos.

In my decade of experience working with executives everyone struggles with this issue of right action and there is likely no end to it. Why? Because clearly our contexts are constantly evolving as are we.

If our path of action, and success, does not align to our deepest integrity we know on some level we have not actually “won”. Someone or something did, but not the thing we serve. To marry integrity and success is to embark on a never ending journey of actualization amidst complexity. And right action requires commitment, focus and attention. It requires practice.